Golf duo take over course at Heaton Park

Date published: 14 February 2020

Heaton Park golf course’s scenic greens have opened once again after a local pro player stepped in to secure its future.

The duo who took over Marland Golf Course in Rochdale, PGA professional Andrew Terry and business partner Joe Jackson – under the name Heaton Park Golf – will take responsibility for the course on behalf of Manchester City Council.

The award-winning 18-hole course, par three pitch-and-putt and clubhouse is open to all park users from today (14 February).

Heywood duo Andrew and Joe, who grew up playing at the prestigious golf course, hope that by taking the reins they can get more people involved in the sport.

The course closed last October after an arrangement between the council and Green Circle Estates came to an end.

The operator had taken over temporarily after Heaton Park’s management company, Mack Trading, ceased trading in October 2018.

Having taken over the golf club at Springfield Park in Rochdale and saved it from a similar fate, Andrew and Joe felt Heaton Park was the next logical step.

Andrew, who has more than 20 years’ experience in the golf industry, said: “We felt that we could really improve the facilities at Heaton Park and keep it open.

“Me and Joe grew up two or three miles away and we’d played at Heaton Park in our childhood, so we knew all about its history and we didn’t want it to close.

“It’s fantastic to get the opportunity to take over what is a great golf course with a fantastic reputation.”

Andrew said the main aim of Heaton Park Golf is to provide an affordable way to play golf for people of all ages.

“We’re trying to remove all the barriers that stop people getting involved in the sport,” he added.

“Private golf clubs tend to have quite a lot of restrictions on dress codes and when you can tee off.

“But we want to scrap all that. People will be able to wear whatever makes them comfortable.”

Young people aged 16 and under will be able to play golf for free, while youngsters will be able to try out the sport using plastic clubs and soft balls.

Plans are also in place to open a cafe hut on the par three pitch-and-putt course to provide drinks and snacks.

Since its most recent closure Heaton Park has been maintained by greenkeepers through the winter while the council searched for a new operator.

Councillor Luthfur Rahman, executive member for skills, culture and leisure at the council, said: “I’d like to offer a warm welcome to Heaton Park Golf and am pleased they will be bringing their expertise to Heaton Park, ensuring that the course continues to make golf accessible to as wide a range of people as possible.  

“They share our aims for a family-friendly, welcoming facility which will be a sustainable part of the park for generations to come.”

Niall Griffiths, Local Democracy Reporter

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